How Fast Does a Christmas Tree Burn?

How Fast Does a Christmas Tree Burn?

Every holiday season stories of tragedy hit the news as homes are burned and lives are lost to fires fueled by dry Christmas trees. Experts think that more critical care with Christmas trees can spare lives — even with simple strategies such as watering a tree daily versus just a few times a week. The ATF recently did a controlled burn test to find out how different kinds of strategies when it comes watering indoor real Christmas trees and how long it would take them to burn. Their motivation was the loss of a family last Christmas in Annapolis, Maryland.Read more

A Different Kind of History of Christmas Trees

A Different Kind of History of Christmas Trees

Pick a history resource out there and you will find a history of Christmas trees that dates back to pagan traditions of the Winter Solstice. The History Channel says Christmas trees took root from ancient use of evergreens as an end-of-year ritual of hope and eternal life. Wikipedia, to its credit, admits that is purely a “speculative theory”. But even Christian history resources cite pagan roots for the modern Christmas tree. Like most history of Christmas all that is too lazy and too easy. Christmas trees are actually a complex form of celebration. And they are much, much older thanRead more

Tips for Keeping Your Christmas Tree Fresh

Tips for Keeping Your Christmas Tree Fresh

By Walt Frazer, California Tree Grower The great debate of Christmas trees will usually lead to what is “wrong” with a real or artificial tree. The hard truth of the matter is that no Christmas tree is imperfect. If there are problems with any kind of Christmas tree it comes from likely not knowing how to handle it. This is especially true of real trees. Growing up near and later working for a local tree grower I eventually learned to explain to people that they need to treat their new tree like a pet. If people abused their pets theRead more

What Thanksgiving Has to Do with Christmas

What Thanksgiving Has to Do with Christmas

There are complaints aplenty out there about how Christmas has stolen time and appreciation from Thanksgiving. Those who cry foul by claiming “Christmas creep” miss the larger lessons of history — and they fail to really see the absurdity of their complaints when compared to the worldwide stage. (See this epic rant and compare it to THIS epic rant). After all, in the UK their annual early-November tradition of Christmas is to showcase and celebrate the Christmas advertisements launched by English department stores. The ads are anticipated as greatly there as Santa Claus is at the end of the ThanksgivingRead more

The Christmas Pickle

The Christmas Pickle

It is a quaint tradition that nobody wants to claim. And its story would not be the first tradition of Christmas born of a total fabrication. It is the little-known tradition of the Christmas pickle. The Christmas pickle is not really a pickle at all. It is a pickle-shaped ornament that is the last one hung on the tree on Christmas Eve. The first child to find the Christmas pickle gets an extra gift from Saint Nicholas. Or so the so-called legend goes. There are two other versions of the origins of the Christmas pickle. One is a family storyRead more

Tips for Keeping Your Cut Tree Fresh

Tips for Keeping Your Cut Tree Fresh

By Fran Holmes Buy your tree early in the season. Why? Christmas trees that are bought from a tree lot are all cut at the same time. The longer your tree sits in the lot, the longer it goes without water and the drier it gets. Try to select a tree from a lot that has lots of shade and shelter from the wind. Cut trees standing in sun and wind, lose a lot of moisture. When you select your tree, look for a tree that is a healthy green. Avoid trees that have lots of brown needles or whoseRead more

Ten Tips for the First-Time Christmas Lights Hanger

Ten Tips for the First-Time Christmas Lights Hanger

By Brad Knight My first experience in hanging Christmas lights taught me a lot of lessons. Newly married and mostly broke, we did not even have the money to get a tree. So I decided to surprise my bride by outlining our basement apartment window with a string of Christmas lights. I bought them at a local drug store for 88 cents. It was a near disaster. The lights were intended for indoor use only and I put them on the outside of the window. Everything was fine until a stormy gust of wind blew the connected extension cord (whichRead more